House dust microbiome and human health risks

Int Microbiol. 2019 Sep;22(3):297-304. doi: 10.1007/s10123-019-00057-5. Epub 2019 Jan 14.


People spend a lot of time indoors and the indoor microbiome is a major part of the environment that we are exposed to. However, awareness of the exposure to the indoor microbiome and its health effects remains poor. Outdoor environment (soil and air), indoor sources (ventilation, dampness and building materials), human occupants, and pets compose the indoor microbial community. It has been estimated that up to 500-1000 different species can be present in house dust. House dust is a major source and reservoir of indoor microbiome, which influences human microbiome and determines health and disease. Herein, we review the origins and the components of the fungal and bacterial communities in house dust and their possible effect on human health, in particular on allergic disorders, intestinal microbiome, and immune responses. We expect to lay a solid foundation for the further study on the mechanisms of how the house dust microbes interact with the host microbiome and the human immune system.

Keywords: Allergic diseases; Bacterial community; Fungal community; Gut microbiome; House dust microbiome.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Bacteria / classification
  • Bacteria / isolation & purification*
  • Dust*
  • Environmental Microbiology*
  • Fungi / classification
  • Fungi / isolation & purification*
  • Humans
  • Microbiota*
  • Risk Assessment*


  • Dust